This chorizo pasta with zucchini is easy to make and the perfect family meal packed with hearty ingredients. It's a delicious recipe made with spicy Spanish chorizo and zucchini in a white wine cream sauce over pasta in just 30 minutes using only one skillet!
⭐ Why this recipe works
Chorizo is a meaty sausage smoked in Latin cultures such as Spain, Mexico, and Portugal and is absolutely delicious cooked on the BBQ, boiled in stews and soups, or mixed into pasta recipes like this irresistible chorizo & zucchini pasta.
Chorizo pasta is an easy meal for any home cook to make that takes just 30 minutes to put together using a single skillet, and it's made using minimal ingredients, making it a budget-friendly recipe.
It's perfect for busy parents when you're short on time during weeknights and want to enjoy a delicious comforting family meal without spending hours in the kitchen - and because there's only one skillet involved to make it, you're not left with a pile of washing up afterward.
The combination of the thickened creamy sauce with softened zucchini, onion, and white wine simmered to infuse the flavors, then tossed with chorizo for a spicy, chewy texture works so well together served overcooked rigatoni pasta and sprinkled with parmesan cheese.
🍽 Key Ingredients
Chorizo pasta with zucchini is one of the most delicious and easiest pasta dishes you will ever make, and it's made with minimal ingredients and one skillet.
Chorizo - Buy good quality Spanish chorizo and not the ready chopped or ground chorizo. The better the chorizo, the tastier the sauce will be.
Veggies - You only need an onion and a zucchini to give the creamy sauce a soft, fragrant texture.
The sauce - All needed to make this delicious sauce is white wine and cream. You don't need the best white wine for this pasta dish - any old cooking wine will do.
Pasta - You want to get the large tubular pasta called Rigatoni.
Spanish chorizo is slightly spicy and made with spices like smoked paprika, chili, and herbs that give the meaty sausage its delicious flavor. Portuguese or Mexican chorizo are good substitutes if you can't get your hands on Spanish chorizo.
A good substitute for rigatoni pasta is penne. Penne is a tubular pasta similar to rigatoni but slightly smaller.
🔪 How to make
Chorizo pasta with zucchini is easy to prepare in just 30 minutes, and you can learn how to make it with my step-by-step instructions using minimal ingredients and a skillet.
- Chop the chorizo and zucchini into small pieces.
- Finely chop the onion.
- Bring a pan of water to a boil and cook the pasta until al dente, then drain and set aside. Usually 2 minutes less than the package instructions.
In a skillet or saucepan, melt the butter and olive oil over medium heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 4 - 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
Increase the temperature to medium-high heat and add the chopped zucchini, cooking until softened - about 4 minutes.
Pour in the white wine, cook out the alcohol and stir in the chorizo. Cook for about 5 minutes for the flavors to combine, then stir in the cream and lower the heat to a simmer until the sauce thickens.
Remove from heat and sprinkle grated parmesan cheese over the top - stir together until melted, then toss with the cooked pasta.
Garnish with a bit more parmesan and serve hot!
💭 Cooking tips
Don't peel the zucchini.
For best results, leave the skin on the zucchini, as it gives the dish color and holds the pieces together - otherwise, it will disintegrate into the sauce.
Remove the skin from the chorizo.
All chorizos have outer skins that need to be removed before cooking, and some are nearly invisible. Make sure to remove it, otherwise, the chopped chorizo will be very chewy and not so tender as it would be without it.
If your sauce is slightly watery, you can thicken it by mixing 1 tablespoon of cornflour with 1 tablespoon of water and mixing it into the sauce. Alternatively, if your sauce is too thick for your liking, save some of the pasta water and add in a spoon at a time to your desired thickness.
📖 Recipe Variations
You can make delicious variations of this recipe by adding other ingredients.
Chicken and chorizo pasta
Give your pasta some extra protein by cooking 1 large chicken breast and mixing it into the creamy sauce.
Extra spicy chorizo pasta
If you love spicy food, you may want to use the spiciest chorizo and add half a teaspoon of red pepper flakes or cayenne pepper.
Chorizo pasta in tomato sauce
Make a tomato pasta sauce by substituting the cream for a can of diced tomatoes. Add the canned tomatoes with the white wine and let them simmer until thickened. Garnish with freshly squeezed lemon juice and chopped parsley, and a few chopped fresh tomatoes.
🥗 What to serve with
Salad is always a good idea to pair with flavorsome pasta dishes, and they are so easy to make in less than 10 minutes. A simple salad of fresh tomatoes, red bell pepper, lettuce, and onion with a vinaigrette, or try this simple mozzarella, basil, and tomato salad.
Serve this tasty pasta dish with fresh bread to soak up the creamy chorizo sauce. One of my go-to easy bread recipes to make with delicious pasta dishes is focaccia because it doesn't need as long to rise as some breads, and it's fluffy, flavorful, and perfect for mopping the delicious sauce.
Zucchini pizza boats
Keep the carbs to a minimum by making these tasty zucchini pizza boats stuffed with mozzarella cheese and pepperoni.
Zucchini pizza boats are a quick way to enjoy pizza without waiting hours for the dough to rise and pair well with other zucchini recipes like chorizo pasta with zucchini.
🙋 Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to salt the water for pasta?
No, it's not necessary to salt the water for boiling the pasta. It's best to add salt and pepper to the recipe.
Is Spanish chorizo the same as Mexican chorizo?
No, Mexican chorizo has a different flavor than Spanish, and it's seasoned with chili peppers and vinegar - whereas the Spanish variety is cured and seasoned with smoked paprika, which gives it a smokey flavor with a bright red color.
🧊 Storing and ♨️ Reheating
Chorizo pasta tastes even better the next day once the flavors infuse if you have any leftovers.
Fridge - Transfer the leftover contents to an airtight container and place them in the fridge for up to 3 days.
Freezer - If you plan to freeze chorizo pasta, it's best to freeze the sauce separately from the pasta in an airtight container. The sauce will freeze for up to 4 months.
Reheating - To reheat leftover chorizo pasta, heat a saucepan or large skillet with a bit of butter and cook the leftovers until hot (around 6 minutes). Alternatively, you can use the microwave at full power at 30-second intervals.
🍳 Related Recipes
For busy weekdays check out my collection of best pasta recipes with few ingredients.
👪 Serving Size
This spicy chorizo pasta with zucchini recipe will give you 4 servings, or you can scale the recipe to cater to more guests. It's easy to double or triple the amount!
Chorizo pasta is a family favorite and such an easy recipe to prepare during busy weeknights.
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Try one of my comfort dinner recipes for your next family meal! And if you have any questions, I'm here to help!
Chorizo Pasta with Zucchini
- 2 tablespoon butter
- 2 tablespoon olive oil
- 1 large onion - chopped
- to taste salt and pepper
- 2 medium zucchini - quartered and sliced
- ¼ cup white wine
- 1 ½ cups Spanish chorizo
- 1 cup heavy cream
- ⅓ cup parmesan cheese - freshly grated
- 1 lb cooked pasta - and drained
- In a medium sized sauce pan, melt the butter and olive oil together over medium low heat. Add the onion and cook until translucent, about 4 - 5 minutes. Season with salt and pepper.
- Increase the heat a bit and add the zucchini. Cook and stir until softened - about 4 minutes more.
- Pour in the white wine and increase the heat a bit more to cook out the alcohol, then stir in the chorizo. Allow this to cook together for about 5 minutes, for the flavor to combine, then stir in the cream and lower the heat to a simmer until the sauce thickens.
- Remove from heat and grate the parmesan cheese over the top - stir together until melted, then toss with the pasta of your choice. Garnish with a bit more parmesan and serve hot!